If you’ve been to the theatre lately, you may have seen previews for the upcoming science fiction flick, Edge of Tomorrow (2014) which, let’s face it, just looks totally cool.
Did you know it’s based on a military sci-fi novel? Because it totally is!
Did you know the book is as effortlessly fast-paced and gripping as any good action movie? Because it totally was!
Newer editions of the novel are published as Edge of Tomorrow, but the original Japanese translation is All You Need Is Kill (2004) by Hiroshi Sakurazaka. It’s about a global war against the Mimics, a race of amphibian-type aliens successfully terraforming our planet for their needs and killing us in the process. The events of the novel take place at what is basically humanity’s last stand against the Mimics off the coast of Japan. We spend two days in the life of Keiji Kiriya, a freshly minted soldier in the United Defense Force who dies a few minutes into his very first battle, only to wake up in his own bed to live it all over again another 160 times. To escape his never-ending nightmare he’ll need the help of the Full Metal Bitch (Rita Vrataski), the inspirational and highly decorated soldier from U.S. Special Ops who intentionally makes herself a target on the battlefield in her bright crimson Jacket. There’s a reason she’s so brave and deadly, and Keiji needs her help to put things right.
This book is divided into four parts, three from Keiji’s perspective, and one from Rita’s. Keiji Kiriya is kind of fascinating, and you can really see the growth of his character as he goes through every loop, growing up a little more while staying exactly the same. But the taste of Rita that we are briefly given in her one section just made me want more. The Full Metal Bitch is a pretty complex character on her own, and I just want to know more about her. She has an interesting way of seeing the world around her, and she is so committed to defeating the Mimics that there is nothing left of herself for anything else.
The only reason I found my way to this book is because of the movie trailer. But now that I’ve read the book, the trailer seems to indicate that the only constant from book to film is that there is a man stuck in a time loop. Knowing that doesn’t seem to lessen my excitement to see the movie, but it probably goes without saying that what you will see in Edge of Tomorrow is a highly Hollywoodized version of something that was perfectly good to start with.
Here’s my favourite official trailer for the film. Edge of Tomorrow premieres June 6!